Friday, August 9, 2019

International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples

Every year, the Isa Mundo Foundation acknowledges and celebrates the International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples. According to the United Nations (UN), it is estimated that 370 million Indigenous people inhabit the globe, representing 5% of the world's population. Indigenous peoples and communities are diverse with distinct languages, cultures and traditional knowledge and help protect 80% of the world's diversity.*

Isa Mundo develops additional strategy regarding the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) to ensure that our projects are inclusive and appropriate consultations are completed in every stage of the project.

Isa Mundo continues to partner with Indigenous people in regions we work and has supported and completed projects in Peru, Guatemala and Mexico in collaboration with local organizations, community members and leaders.

We acknowledge that our office in Ottawa, Ontario is located on the traditional unceded territories of the Algonquin nation. Our office in Vancouver, British Columbia is located on the shared unceded territories of the Musqueam, Skxwú7mesh, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations of the Coast Salish peoples. 

To learn more about International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples and how to support and celebrate Indigenous cultures and communities - please visit the United Nations website. 

Meegwetch –ᖁᔭᓐᓇᒦᒃ - Marsi – Mahsi Cho - Wela’lin – Nia:Wen - hay ch œa - Huy Chexw

* From the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change 
** Posters from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Indigenous

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Empowerment International

We would like to highlight the Empowerment International (EI), an organization based in Granada, Nicaragua.  It has been years since we last visited EI but we are hoping to do so in the near future.  We are happy to update that the program we helped launched at EI is still going strong and the IMEC is operational and being used by students. 

We will be reaching out to EI this year to help provide additional support and upgrade laptops, devices and other educational tools needed.  EI also has the ability to do mobile or home visits as part of its education program which increases its reach in providing opportunities for children who cannot make the travel to city of Granada.  We want to explore how we can support this important initiative.  

To see the IMEC in EI, visit the Computer Lab – Program Site and to learn more about the organization, click on

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Happy Nanay's Day !

Isa Mundo Foundation would like to take the time to recognize and celebrate all mothers who have given so much to make families and communities better.

This year, Isa Mundo Foundation is promoting and highlighting the Malala Foundation - an organization working for the world where every girl can learn and lead and a commitment to ensure every girl has access to education.  This Mother's Day, we would like to honor the passion and care of mothers to change the world and create a better future for all children.

To learn more about this organization and campaign, please visit the Malala Foundation at

And to all the Mothers in the world - Thank You!  And Happy Nanay's Day !!

Friday, May 3, 2019

IMEC in Bambang Elementary School

We wanted to provide an update on the success of the Isa Mundo Education Centre (IMEC) in the village of Bambang Bulacan - the beloved community where Isa Mundo Founder, Paul Lorilla was born and raised.

Following are excerpts from the 2017-18 IMEC Report provided by the IMEC Lead Coordinator: 

This school year, 2017-2018, Bambang Elementary School and in partnership with ISA MUNDO FOUNDATION, through the help and support of Mr. Paul Lorilla, conducted a series of sessions for giving basic education in computer lesson for selected Grade 5 pupils.  This program aims to develop children with readiness and have enough knowledge about computers while attending public school.
The training was handled and supervised by Ms. Meann C. Ruga. The integration in every subject is the focus of the sessions and to give the pupils knowledge about some important details on using computer.  The program conducted last February 26, 2018 to March 23, 2018 was given to the selected pupils.  They learned the basic education of how to use MS Word, MS Excel and MS Powerpoint.  The activities given are part of their other subjects like Filipino, English, Math and Science.
As the result of the program, the integration of knowledge regarding the use of computer is evident and observed, the pupils learned important skills from the lessons given to them and enjoyed every session in discovering new things about the basic knowledge on using computer and technology.

Through ISA MUNDO FOUNDATION, our vision and mission for the school especially to the pupils are truly achieved and the quality of education has improved. Bambang Elementary School is very blessed and fortunate to have kind-hearted sponsors like ISA MUNDO Foundation.  They are always ready to lend their hands in order to support our projects in improving the quality of education of our pupils.
We will be providing additional support to upgrade technology, communication and network connection to the Bambang IMEC in 2019 and begin discussion on how to fund after school teachers to reach other children and youth in the village who may not be able to attend regular school hours.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Stuart's All Star Band

Blog written by Paul Lorilla

I would like to announce that May is Cystic Fibrosis Month and I am giving a shout out to two incredible people: my colleague and friend, Guinevere Sanderson and her Superhero boy, Stuart.  Warning ! This will not be like other blogs we write as an update ...

As Mundoers, I know that we are tasked when we travel the world to look for passion, commitment and inspiration from people and communities that are less fortunate and in need of a hand up - and this has been the mantra of Isa Mundo.  But from time to time, I am reminded that inspiration is right beside me and that someone I work and converse with each day, is in need of my help. Guin has been an inspiration - similar to all parents who will do anything for their children - she provides that unconditional love and care and then do additional things that remind me of the power of pure love that can sometimes be also driven by anger.  Anger at a disease affecting her child, her family and even her role as a mother. The inspiration to accept reality, continue to nurture, provide friendship, serve Canadians, and then give more time to fight the battle to find the cure to Cystic Fibrosis (CF) so that less people suffer from this horrible disease.  Admirable ...

Then there is Stuart. This perennial rockstar makes me cry because it sucks to see children sick and I tear up with joy when I see him doing things like any normal child. Like all Superheroes, he finds a way to lift us all and take us on a journey by confronting CF full on while inspiring all of us to join him on this battle. I cannot seem to turn a blind eye on CF despite the many projects and commitments we have chosen to support and countless personal fundraising we have done for other initiatives. I have been told that at some point, we choose a few and do it well as passionate folks will surely support all other important causes.

We recently had an All-Staff meeting in Vancouver, the annual gathering where I see my wonderful colleagues together. We had a team-building exercise where we each provided a photo that represents our healing and happy spaces. Guin chose a photo of Stuart walking in the forest as a glimpse of a space that has a positive effect on her well being - this was displayed for us to see and we were tasked to reflect on what each photos conveyed. In the end of the gathering, we could take one photo with us - it was easy for me to choose and I now have this photo in my office.  It reminds me when I see it to be aware of the power of the human spirit and that there is work to do beyond the projects Isa Mundo are doing. What is really one more to take on when we are blessed enough to have the strength and ability to do more.

As the person who drafted our Terms of Reference and outlined that we do not personalize projects we launch and support, I find myself guilty of breaking that. No doubt, CF has affected me because of the relationship I have with Guin and her dedication to keep doing what she is doing with so much compassion, humour and unbreakable spirit. But I'm sure I can be forgiven because this one affects us all.

It is CF Month and the annual Walk to Make CF History will be taking place Sunday, May 26th across Canada.  There are many ways to get involved:
  • Donate;
  • Participate in a walk or virtual walk;
  • Sponsor a walker;
  • Raise awareness and funds on social media;
  • Volunteer through your local Cystic Fibrosis Canada chapter.
I am asking all our members, supporters and volunteers to give and commit what you would normally do for Isa Mundo this month to CF and let's tackle this one like we do all other projects - 100% effort and with care!  To do your part visit the CF Awareness Month and Walk to Make CF History website. and Stuart's All Star Band Team.

You are all heroes already, but I ask this month - Mundoers, assemble !!

Monday, April 1, 2019

Hola Yelapa !

We are happy to report that the first official visit by the Isa Mundo Foundation to formally assess future projects in Yelapa, Mexico was completed in March 2019.  Isa Mundo provided support in coordinating the Global Youth Leadership Network's (GYLN)  travel to Yelapa to learn more about the community, education challenges and how to improve the situation of students. This was GYLN members' first trip to Yelapa and opened their eyes to challenges and possibilities of supporting projects in a different geographical location outside of the Puerto Vallarta region.

We were pleased to meet Kelley-Ann Chesley, the coordinator and lead of various school initiatives in Yelapa and we were impressed with the level of knowledge and patience she showed us during this visit.  We are grateful for the effort she provided in setting up discussions with local leaders, invitations to events, a walking tour of the village and arranging meetings with teachers and students.  We could not ask for more that what we experienced and wished we had more time to spend in Yelapa.

As Isa Mundo assessed in 2015-2017 and observed in this visit, Yelapa presents some challenges due to its location and logistic of bringing supplies, materials and volunteers to the community. There would be additional costs to consider when volunteering as budget for accommodation, transportation, meals etc. would be additional to costs while also traveling and staying in the main Puerto Vallarta area.  One thing not lacking in Yelapa are passionate local members and expats who are committed to improve and develop the village to be a thriving and healthy community for residents and visitors. We observed that everyone dedicates time they have ensuring that children and youth have access to a good education. 

Isa Mundo is committed to support projects in Yelapa and we are looking forward to find additional funds and in-kind donations to support Kelley-Ann and her small team as she gives so much of her time to volunteer in the community.  We believe that strong local leadership is one of the most important aspects of any successful international project and local coordinators are often the last to be supported and compensated for their volunteer time.

To learn more about these projects visit the Yelapa School Project website.

Gracias / Thank you.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Isa Mundo - Global Young Leaders Network in Boca

We are excited to have arrived in Boca de Tomatlan this week to continue the work in improving the Isa Mundo Education Centre (IMEC) in this community. The IMEC in Boca would not come to fruition without the support and strong partnership with the Global Young Leaders Network (GYLN) and their commitment to launch and support an education project in the region. The IMEC was officially launched by Isa Mundo 2018 as part of the school's Boca Education Project. This partnership means that we have committed to support the project for the next 5 years.

The visit is a continuation of GYLN's objective to complete its annual international development objective but also to deliver its commitment to improve the situation of students, families and communities where they are able to travel and make a positive impact. GYLN's vision aligns perfectly with Isa Mundo and our partnership with the group helps to deliver one of our important objectives: mentoring young people and ensuring that we can pass on our experience and community network to create future leaders.

Most important for both organizations is the long term effect of the support given to Boca Education Project, its Program Coordinator (Cynthia Leigh) and all students.  We will continue to find ways to attract funding and in-kind support for the project ensuring that students thrive in their learning and have the opportunity to reach their educational goals.

We will provide updates as we continue to improve the IMEC in Boca de Tomatlan.  And muchas gracias to GYLN members and their dedication to support education initiatives globally.


Monday, February 11, 2019

Mexico Visits in March

Isa Mundo Foundation will be very busy with the first visits of 2019 in Mexico that will take place in March.

Mundoers (led by Andrée Lacasse) will be visiting Pasitos de Luz at Casa Connor the week of March 8-15 and will be assessing potential partnership to develop student practicums on-site.

Paul Lorilla will accompany the GYLN group again this year the week of March 16-23 and will return to Boca Primary School to continue the work the group launched and supported in 2018. The GYLN group will also visit Yelapa to assess future projects, do some hands on work and spend time doing activities with students and teachers.  This is a great opportunity to visit a community that we have always wanted to partner with.

We will report back on-site and we would like to thank our supporters and partners in making these trips possible.

Thank you, Merci, Gracias!

Friday, January 25, 2019

Air Transat Partnership

airtransat.caIsa Mundo Foundation is very excited to have completed a partnership with Air Transat and  looking forward to traveling to our projects in Latin America by using Air Transat services (flights, accommodation, cargo) in the future.

This is an important partnership and collaboration as travel costs are often an "out of pocket" expense for all Isa Mundo members and volunteers. With 100% of all funding via grants, in-kind or financial donations going straight to projects - Mundoers have been donating their own funding to every trip completed for site visits, on-site hands on volunteer work and project evaluation trips.

We are grateful for Air Transat and its staff for their commitment to support the work we do in origin and destination locations they serve.  Air Transat has been doing tremendous work globally with some projects having similar focus as Isa Mundo such as SOS Children's Village, supporting orphanages, donating education and humanitarian supplies and responding to natural disasters relief efforts. 

We believe that we can support the efforts of Air Transat and it can enhance the travel experience of our volunteers providing their time and passion to serve those less fortunate.

To learn more about Air Transat and its commitment to family and community development, please visit its Corporate Responsibility page.

Thank you, Merci, Gracias!